QUESTIONS FOR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS
Our Frequently Asked Questions
Finding The Right Answers To The Right Questions
Planning a proposal shoot, engagement session, and especially a wedding day is no easy task. There are so many questions for wedding photographers that need answering, so we have collated our most frequently asked for you to peruse.
We know very well that there are many lists of ‘Top Questions To Ask A Wedding Photographer’ out there. Unfortunately, they often contain masses of questions, many of them irrelevent. So we have gathered together thos that we feel will be of the most use to you.
You can read more about why you should take these lists with a pinch of salt in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “Why Should You Meet Your Wedding Photographer”
Wedding Photography Services Questions
Do I Need Two Wedding Photographers?
This is by far the most popular of our questions for wedding photographers. You need to book two wedding photographers to ensure the following:
- That no moment is missed in the story of your big day.
- Photographic coverage is as unobtrusive as possible.
- Your wedding photographs are as natural as they can be.
- Group and couple photographs are captured in a fast and efficient manner.
- Consistently high-quality coverage is achieved without time limits.
- You receive stunning wedding photographs no matter what.
Multiple events occur simultaneously at weddings and they are all worth capturing as part of the entire story of your big day. More often than not a single shooter cannot achieve this. Bride and Groom coverage in the morning is a good example. Where the wedding story takes place in two very different locations. Two photographers mean that detail, people, events, and scenic images are all possible at simultaneous times throughout the day.
Blending In With A Wedding Day
It sounds odd but two photographers are actually less obtrusive than a solo shooter, especially within the “static” parts of the day. During a ceremony or speeches, there is nothing more distracting than a solo photographer moving about the room to capture shots from different angles. Two photographers can remain hidden and still, capturing different angles, which is why vicars and registrars love weddings with two photographers.
Working as Dorset wedding photographers we often pride ourselves on being able to blend in well with wedding guests, resulting in more natural images. We can better achieve this as a pair of photographers, for when a guest wants to talk to one photographer about their latest camera for ten minutes the other can still cover the developing events. When one photographer has to help the bride out with hair clips or dress adjustments (it happens more than you can imagine!) the other is still covering the rest of the proceedings.
With two wedding photographers group photographs take less time, are easier to organise, and allow guests to be more natural. Whilst one photographer is working to guests’ expectations and engaging groups the other can capture them in a less “Victorian” pose.
We don’t work as “photographer and assistant” or “photographer and second shooter”, we are a team of two full-time professional wedding photographers, working synchronously together. We often bounce ideas off each other, keeping our creative juices flowing. If one photographer needs a five-minute rest the other will still be shooting away. This means that the quality of our work is maintained at a consistently high level throughout the day and that we can work longer than a single shooter without tiring, thus no time limits. Read more about Tom & Murray, one thousand words photographers.
Two photographers also provide an exceptional insurance policy, not only do we have backup equipment but back up photographers. It hasn’t happened yet but should something unfortunate render us unable to work at a wedding you will still have a photographer in attendance taking images. If a solo shooter breaks a leg or a backup camera your coverage ends there.
In conclusion, the question should be “Why would you have one photographer when you could have two?”
Read more about why you should have two wedding photographers and see examples of what is possible in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “Why Do I Need Two Wedding Photographers?“.
How Long Should You Book A Wedding Photographer For?
This is a really important subject that is often misunderstood when thinking of questions for wedding photographers. Wedding photographers’ services vary from a few hours to full-day coverage, the amount of coverage being the main price-determining factor. Even full-day coverage can come with time restrictions. If you truly want the entire story of one of the biggest days of your life then you need a wedding photographer who works without time limits. See how coverage time can affect the quality of your wedding photographs and service in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost?“.
Wedding photography services without time limits means we can document your entire day, from the time you start getting ready until the evening celebrations, we don’t want to miss anything. We tend to arrive a few hours before you get into your dress and leave about an hour after the first dance, of course, if there are important things happening later (i.e. fireworks) we stay on to capture them.
No wedding has ever run exactly to time and the last thing you want to see is your photographer leaving during your first dance because his “eight hours are up” or being charged for “extra coverage time”. With our limitless coverage, there is an absolute piece of mind that the entire day will be captured.
Read more about shooting weddings without time limits in our blog post on How To Choose The Perfect Wedding Photographer.
How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost?
This has to be in the top 3 most popular questions for wedding photographers. In general, you can pay any figure for wedding photography services. But as with most services you pay for what you get. At the bottom end of the market amateur photographers or “weekend warriors” charge a few hundred pounds for their time. Whereas the top end will charge thousands.
It is important to remember that the cost of wedding photography reflects the quality not only of the photographs but of the service you will receive. Make no mistake, this is the difference between poor wedding photographs and exceptional wedding photographs you will treasure for a lifetime. You can read much more in-depth about our thoughts on this in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost?”
Across the board the specifics of what are included in photographers’ services vary wildly, making them incredibly hard to compare. We have taken our knowledge and experience from the last twenty years of working with brides to create our “All Inclusive” wedding photography service.
Please visit our services page to see exactly what our fully inclusive wedding photography services include. Please check our availability for current pricing. Our booking fee is a third of your total (services & engagement shoot & album).
We do tend to get booked up two years ahead of time so checking our availability as soon as you have a date in mind is recommended.
What Are Engagement Photographs And Do I Need Them?
Engagement photographs are created when a professional photographer takes pictures of you and your fiancé in a relaxed setting, naturally capturing you as a couple. An engagement photography session is a less formal experience than a wedding day. You can choose the location (often meaningful to you as a couple) and your outfits. Your photographer has the freedom to work more creatively capturing more personal, intimate images without the presence of your wedding guests.
For a more detailed discussion please check out our blog post on Why You Need Engagement Photos
Primarily an engagement photography session helps you understand how we work, avoiding postured posing and pre‐prescribed lighting setups and working unobtrusively with the natural flow of the events and surroundings. Through familiarity with our techniques, you can easily relax in front of the camera.
We would recommend an engagement shoot to anyone. It is a great excuse to get to know each other better, your likes and dislikes, and how you see and feel about your wedding day.
As you have been through the experience of having your photographs taken and seeing the stunning results you gain the extra confidence that we will take beautiful photographs of you.
Finally, an engagement photo shoot provides you with an extra set of beautiful couple photographs. In the past, they have been used for things such as wedding invites, signing boards/ books, beer bottle labels, sticks of rock labels, framed images, and wedding websites, not forgetting the all-important social media profiles!
Have a look and see our recent engagement photographs.
Where Should I Have My Engagement Photography?
We recommend choosing an engagement photography location that is meaningful to both of you and your relationship. Professional engagement photography should be as unique as your relationship, capturing the love between you in a location you love.
Past engagement photo shoots have included wedding proposal venues, beaches used for family holidays, woodland next to a favourite campsite, and a couple’s favourite picnic spot.
We include 50 miles of travel in the price of an engagement shoot but are happy to travel further (locations within 25 miles of our offices mean that we have greater availability in our diary).
We are very fortunate with our location that the area around our office provides thousands of different locations; beautiful rolling hills, beaches, forests and woodland, estuaries, islands, ruined castles, stunning hotels, smugglers’ coves, ancient abbeys, tiny idyllic villages, stunning landscaped gardens and world heritage coastline to choose from!
Please visit our wedding wisdom blog post to learn more about the Top Ten Tips For The Perfect Engagement Shoot.
How Far Do Wedding Photographers Travel?
Generally, wedding photographers will travel as far as is needed to capture your wedding. Once a wedding photographer regularly shoots weddings abroad and wishes to specialise in this type of wedding they will refer to themselves as “Destination Wedding Photographers”. Typically local wedding photographers will not need to charge for travel and accommodation whereas destination photographers will include these items in their costs.
Although we are wedding photographers based in Dorset we are used to travelling to weddings at destinations all over the UK and abroad. Our fully inclusive service incorporates 100 miles of travel, after which we charge extra for travel and accommodation (if required).
We can provide you with an accurate travel quote if you check our availability for your wedding date, including details of your wedding location.
Wedding Photographs Questions
How Many Wedding Photographs Do You Need?
There is no ‘average number of photographs’ taken by a wedding photographer, as services vary so wildly for each and between each wedding photographer. You can read more in-depth knowledge on how many wedding photos you need in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost?”.
We asked some of our brides to take part in a revealing experiment. We printed 1000 of their images each and asked them to sort through and answer two important questions:
1) What is the minimum number of images needed to tell the story of your day without feeling that there are any gaps?
2) How many images are too many? That is, how many images take too long to look through and make you feel like any more aren’t required?
The findings dictate the number of images we now supply and answer this most pertinent of questions for wedding photographers. Any less than 250 photographs and our brides felt like there were gaps in the story of their day. Any more than 700 and our brides felt like they had too many images to handle.
Yes, you can hire a photographer who will supply you with thousands and thousands of batch-processed images. However, that would take you forever just to look through your wedding photographs. For us wedding photography is more about quality than quantity. We individually process each of our selected images to maintain the highest quality possible. This can take anywhere from ten to thirty minutes per image!
We guarantee a minimum of 250 images but typically deliver 600-700.
What Are Wedding Photography Styles?
Again, within the top ten questions for wedding photographers we are asked about our ‘wedding photography style’ There are three general categories of popular wedding photography styles;
1. Traditional/ Classical Wedding Photography
A traditional wedding photographer will shoot every image as a posed photograph. They typically use large portable lighting equipment and will work to a set of pre-prescribed images and ‘key shots’ throughout a wedding day. The photographer is often involved in directing and posing the wedding party.
2. Documentary/ Photojournalistic/ Reportage Wedding Photography
A documentary wedding photographer captures the story of the day as it unfolds around them. This style is often quite unobtrusive, with the photographer blending into the day. Documentary wedding photography often produces the most natural images possible, with very few ‘posed’ photographs.
3. Fine Art Wedding Photography
Wedding photographers shooting in a fine art style often incorporate techniques from traditional and reportage photography. They will pose objects and guide people in a less formal and ‘list-based’ manner than traditional photographers to achieve atmospheric images.
Black and White, Portrait, Fashion, Vintage and Aerial Wedding Photography
These types of photography aren’t technically unique styles. There are more techniques that are often used as part of the styles listed above. For example, a documentary wedding photographer may well use a drone to capture some venue shots from above or a fine art photographer may choose to convert their images to mimic black and white film.
one thousand words Wedding Photography Style
We shoot primarily in an unobtrusive, documentary style that incorporates a blend of approaches and techniques; landscape, portrait, fine art, photo-journalistic, HDR, and experimental photography.
We are well known for creating beautiful high quality wedding photography just as unique as the weddings themselves.
How Long Should I Wait For My Wedding Photographs?
The time it takes wedding photographers to deliver your photographs can vary greatly from days to months, so this is essential to include in your questions for wedding photographers. In the current climate of instant sharing, filters, and printing there is a temptation to believe that wedding photographs should also be produced on a fast time scale. However, the truth is quite the opposite. The length of time it takes to produce wedding photographs is often indicative of the amount of attention spent on and the quality of your wedding photographs. You can read more about the relationship between delivery time and quality of wedding photographs in our Wedding Wisdom blog post “How Much Does Wedding Photography Cost”.
In order to produce high-quality documentary wedding photography it takes a great amount of time to carefully select the wedding photographs that will best tell the story of your wedding day. As originally film-trained photographers we believe that processing the images to the best quality is incredibly important. We individually process each wedding photograph so that it will stand alone as a piece of artwork and work fluidly within the storytelling set of images.
We typically deliver about one hundred images in a ‘Sneak Peek’ blog post three weeks after a wedding. All of the weddings you can see on our blog are ‘Sneak Peeks’. We will then deliver your final set of photographs five to seven weeks afterward.
Do You Take Group Wedding Photographs?
Although we shoot primarily in a documentary style, there is always room for group photographs should you want them.
The last thing we want to do is create a lengthy ‘photo call’ in the middle of your wedding day. We recommend starting with a handful of groups that are your priority, we then fill the remaining time allocated with other groups.
We find the easier and faster groups are to organise the more relaxed you and your guests are, and the less time is spent ‘waiting around’.
Should I Have Black And White Wedding Photography?
The choice of whether or not to have black and white wedding photography is entirely yours. As documentary wedding photographers we tend to work to your choices. Years of experience have told us that the amount of black and white photographs supplied tend to be unique to that individual wedding.
Most of the time we will envisage and image before we take it and make adjustments if we think it would be better in black and white. Obviously we can tailor the proportion of black and white photographs according to our bride and grooms preferences.
Both Murray and I were originally trained in black and white film photography so are passionate about the look and feel of our black and white photographs. You can see examples of our black and white wedding photography in our gallery of wedding photographs.
Wedding Photography Questions - Others
Do I Need A Wedding Photographer Familiar With My Wedding Venue?
Another of those questions for wedding photographers that does not have a simple answer. Having previously worked at a wedding venue can be an advantage or a disadvantage depending on the photographer and their approach to covering your wedding day. Read more about choosing a wedding photographer based on their location.
Over the years we have worked at hundreds of different venues all over the world. Each time we shoot a venue we work it with fresh eyes. You can see our favourites on our wedding venue page.
We like all of our wedding photographs to be unique and to get our creative juices flowing with both new and familiar venues. Feel free to tell us which venue you have selected in our contact form.
Can You Recommend Any Other Wedding Suppliers?
Yes we can. Not many other people have as much experience working directly with other suppliers before, during and after a wedding as photographers.
With over twenty years of working with hundreds of different wedding suppliers we can provide you with some whole hearted recommendations to suit your needs.
We have complied a list of some of our favourite recommended wedding suppliers that we have been fortunate to work with over the years. If you require specific recommendations please just ask in our contact form.
Do We Need To Feed Our Wedding Photographers?
This is one of those questions for wedding photographers that many couples don’t see as relevant until they really think about the work that is achieved by documentary wedding photographers.
The short answer is yes. With full-day coverage, we entirely concentrate on producing beautiful wedding photographs, we have little time to think about sourcing, cooking, or chilling food and therefore need feeding and watering throughout the day.
We ask that we have a hot meal to eat at the beginning of wedding breakfast which allows us time to digest before springing back to work!
Answering Questions For Wedding Photographers In Our Wedding Wisdom Posts
With over 20 years of experience shooting hundreds of weddings and working closely with hundreds of brides and grooms, we like to share useful expert wedding knowledge with you in our Wedding Wisdom blog posts. You can find more answers to wedding photography-related questions there. You may also find more questions that are worth considering!
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